ACTEGA with significantly increased production capacity for overprint varnishes
- Production capacity for water-based and UV overprint varnishes exceeds 150,000 tons per year
- New integrated site in Brazil strengthens both global presence and local market position
- Integration of Schmid Rhyner enables broader portfolio of innovative product solutions and specialties
Wesel, 27th April 2020 – ACTEGA, manufacturer of specialty coatings, inks, adhesives and sealing compounds with a focus on the packaging and printing industry, is significantly expanding its production capacities for water-based and UV overprint varnishes. As a result, the global production output increases to more than 150,000 tons per year. Around 2 million euros have been invested in a new integrated site in Brazil. Here, in future, a total of 180 employees will be located to support the business. “Production and warehousing will occupy most of the 12,000 square meter facility with new high efficiency equipment installed to produce overprint varnishes”, explains Andrei Sotkeviciene, Managing Director at ACTEGA in Brazil. “Research and development activities will take place in an ultra-modern, 500 square meter research laboratory set up for this purpose.” Moreover, ACTEGA records a significant increase in production capacities, especially for UV coatings, due to the integration of Schmid Rhyner AG. This company, based in Adliswil, Switzerland, with almost 80 employees and a turnover of around 50 million euros, specializes in solutions for print finishing and digital printing.
“ACTEGA consists of 11 companies with worldwide production facilities and sales offices“, states Andreas Gipp, Senior Vice President of Global Business Line Paper and Board. “Due to our production sites in Europe, North and South America as well as in China, we can not only better serve internationally operating printing groups and be closer to our customers, but also proactively support them in their growth.“ This also makes it possible to react in a more flexible way to local customer requirements.
A focus on new technologies
For differentiation, more and more customers rely on UV Touch & Feel coatings or coatings for special visual effects such as MotionCoat™, UV Silver and UV Micro Structure to apply them to sophisticated folding cartons, including food, beverage, pharmaceutical, tobacco packaging, and other printed products. Apart from the further development of such products known in the market, among them coatings for direct and indirect food contact, ACTEGA will continue to focus strongly on new technologies and products.
One focus here is on digital printing and digital varnishing. As early as 2016, competence and technology centers for digital printing were established at the Lehrte site near Hannover, Germany and the Cinnaminson facility in New Jersey, USA. Here not only all R&D activities are bundled, but also inks, primers and overprint varnishes required for the use of digital printing technologies are provided. Moreover, ACTEGA offers – based on the diVar® technology developed and patented by Schmid Rhyner – a wide range of digital coatings suitable for both FCM applications and general printing on sheetfed and webfed printing assets.
Another example of the focus on new technologies is EcoLeaf. In development and productization at ACTEGA since 2017 and soon to be commercially available, EcoLeaf enables metallization without foil and thus improves the sustainability of all related processes. “Already now we achieve more than 25% of our turnover with new products and R&D investment represents 10% of our sales turnover“, describes Andreas Gipp. „It is in our interest to conduct intensive research and to continuously improve products. Thus, we are currently working on a next generation of barrier coatings, enabled by novel aqueous thermoplastic elastomer dispersions of the YUNICO® technology, which are free from emulsifiers and solvents.“
Product safety and sustainability
Legally compliant product solutions, especially designed for the high safety standards of the food, pharmaceutical and toy industries, and meeting the exacting needs of customers determine ACTEGA’s innovation roadmap and activities. This is achieved by highly developed analytics, in-house migration test laboratories, regional experts for product safety as well as reliable knowledge of regulations and legal requirements in individual countries.
Sustainability was an issue that ACTEGA addressed at an early stage with appropriate product solutions. „With the new future ACTGreen® product line we have recently taken another important step in this direction“, says Dr. Lisa Schönenberg, Global Portfolio Manager Paper & Board. “This is a new, sustainable portfolio of water-based coatings for mainly folding cartons and labels. All matt and gloss coatings have been formulated based on renewable or recycled raw materials. Depending on functionality and desired properties, the products can thus have a sustainability of more than 60%.” As such, ACTEGA is also in line with the objectives of the ALTANA Group. By 2025, the specialty chemicals group will be reducing its CO2 emissions from production and energy procurement to zero worldwide in order to consistently protect the climate and the environment.
Picture 1: The new integrated ACTEGA location in Araçariguama, Brazil, will allow customers to be served in an even more focused and targeted manner.
Picture 2: Highly automated coating production in Lehrte. With over 100 stainless steel storage tanks and miles of piping, over 80,000 tons of coatings p.a. can be produced using a process control system. Batch sizes up to 35 tons can be produced several times a day. A production data management system controls all process data fully automatically and ensures that a consistent quality is produced. The large-volume filling runs from storage tanks with a capacity of up to 65 tons via robot/coordinate filling systems that are linked to the logistics area via digital systems.
ACTEGA is a division of the internationally operating specialty chemicals group ALTANA and develops and produces coatings, sealants, printing inks and adhesives for flexible and rigid packaging as well as the graphic arts industry. These products do not only provide materials such as paper, cardboard, plastics or metal with an attractive surface, but also with functional properties such as chemical and physical resistance. ACTEGA' s main customer for the products developed, produced and marketed is the packaging industry.